Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Social Work

Sept 2020 Entry

Programme code: JS3662

Duration and Credit Requirement

Mode of Study
Normal Duration

4 years

Credit Required for Graduation

119 (plus 15 clinical/field credits)

Programme Intake
Fund Type
Programme Leader(s)

Dr Timothy Sim
BA, MSc, PhD


This programme is offered within the BA(Hons) Scheme in Applied Social Sciences.

Aims and Characteristics

Programme Aims & Learning Outcomes

We prepare our students to develop a solid foundation and discipline-specific knowledge in social sciences and social work, a repertoire of professional competence and skills, a firm commitment to social justice, a sense of ethical and social responsibility and a humanitarian orientation. Our graduates are competent in flexibly and creatively using information, knowledge, theories and resources.


Programme Characteristics

A strong social science foundation strengthens students' analytical ability and familiarises them with the economic, social and cultural contexts of social problems and social work action. Theory is integrated with practice. We recognise the need to develop not just theoretical abilities and skills, but also the ability to feel, empathise and appreciate.


The Department offers placement opportunities both in the Chinese mainland and overseas.

Recognition and Prospects

Professional Recognition

Graduates are eligible for registration with the Social Workers Registration Board (SWRB) as Registered Social Workers (RSWs).


Career Prospects

Graduates are eligible for registration with the Social Workers Registration Board (SWRB) as Registered Social Workers (RSWs).


With this qualification, they are employable as Assistant Social Work Officers or the equivalent, and can be promoted to Social Work Officers, Senior Social Work Officers and Chief Social Work Officers.


They are also qualified for a variety of human service posts in other fields of the social services or in private organisations.


  • Year One focuses on the theme of "becoming a social worker". It aims to impart the necessary professional attitudes, knowledge and competence. Besides the University’s core curriculum, students study common underpinning subjects to strengthen their knowledge of the social science discipline.
  • Years Two and Three focus on the theme of "becoming a social worker in context". It aims to equip students with a wide range of social science and discipline-specific knowledge. Students are exposed to various social issues and problems from a multi-dimensional perspective. They learn to articulate the core values of social work and commit to ethical and responsible social work practices.
  • Year Four focuses on the theme of "becoming a reflective social worker". It aims to help students integrate theoretical learning, practical applications and metatheoretical reflection on direct practice. By completing a Capstone Project, students are able to consolidate their undergraduate learning and prepare to become professionals.


Information on the programme can be obtained at

Entrance Requirements and Subject Weightings

Satisfy the University's General Entrance Requirements.

All HKDSE subjects carry the same weighting in our admissions selection.

Other Information
Only Band A applicants will be considered for admission. Selected Band A applicants may be invited to interview upon release of HKDSE results.

Admission Score Calculation

Admission Score Calculation Mechanism for the Current Admission Exercise

4 Core + Best 2 Elective Subjects

(Click here for an explanation)

Average HKDSE Scores of Admittees

2017-18: 27.0 (4 Core + Best 2 Elective Subjects)

2018-19: 26.6 (4 Core + Best 2 Elective Subjects)

2019-20: 26.9 (4 Core + Best 2 Elective Subjects)

(Click here for an explanation)


For further programme information, please contact:
The General Office (tel: 2766 5867; email:

Student Message

The events of the last two years have proved that I made the right choice in studying at PolyU. The opportunities I have encountered have enabled me to become a well-rounded person. The tutors and professors responsible for the Social Work programme within the Applied Social Sciences Department are experienced and helpful. Some of them even maintain their roles as frontline social workers to keep themselves abreast of developments in service and ensure that their skills remain fresh. This has the added advantage of giving them real cases to share with their students for a better understanding of certain therapies or theories. 


The department offers overseas work placement opportunities in mainland China, Taiwan and Canada. International placements enable students to enrich their knowledge and look deeper into the social work practices in other countries. Through my overseas placement, I learned how to apply my skills in a real-life setting while reflecting on current social work practice in Hong Kong.

Chan Ting Ling, Selene

PolyU is impressive not only for its spectacular and unique red brick appearance, but also for its insightful courses, knowledgeable and caring instructors, interactive and vivid learning environment, numerous overseas exchange opportunities and wide range of extracurricular activities. I particularly value the mentor-mentee relationships forged during our two placement experiences. A training programme for social workers or human services practitioners requires considerable integration of theory and practice. Students thus receive guidance from proficient and personable mentors. If I ever have doubts, my mentors are very supportive and motivating. In addition, I enjoy the small-class teaching and seminars in the programme. My classmates and I are able to discuss certain topics in detail with the instructors. This cultivates an effective learning environment by providing sufficient time for everyone to speak up. All in all, I highly recommend studying Social Work at PolyU.

HU Chung Yan, Shirley

Additional Documents Required

No information is available at present.

Interview Arrangement

Date: After the announcement of HKDSE results
Mode:Group interview

To evaluate the potential for and interest of applicants in the programme and the profession, and to test their language competence and skills in interpersonal communication and teamwork.

Medium:Cantonese and English

About 1 hour


Only Band A applicants will be considered for admission. Selected Band A applicants may be invited to interview upon release of HKDSE results.